Table 1

 Patient characteristics and disease activity at the initiation of biological treatment

Year2000–0120022003p Value
Values are medians with 25th and 75th centiles in parentheses (continuous variables).
p Values (Kruskal-Wallis) compare the three cohorts based on year of treatment. *p Values calculated with χ2 test.
DMARDs, disease modifying antirheumatic drugs; DAS28, Disease Activity Score based on 28 joint count and CRP12; TJC, tender joint count of 28 joints; SJC, swollen joint count of 28 joints; mHAQ, modified Health Assessment Questionnaire Score; CRP, C reactive protein.
Patients
    DK323207293323
    N8691194
Women (%)
    DK69.871.174.80.19*
    N73.672.577.20.61*
Age (years)
    DK58.0 (48.0–65.0)56.0 (47.0–63.0)56.0 (45.0–64.0)0.08
    N53.2 (46.7–62.5)52.6 (45.3–59.7)52.3 (40.2–59.3)0.25
Disease duration (years)
    DK14.0 (8.0–20.0)10.0 (6.0–19.0)10.0 (5.0–18.0)<0.001
    N11 (5.0–17.0)8.2 (5.0–15.0)8.8 (4.4–14.3)0.18
No of previous DMARDs
    DK5.0 (3.0–6.0)4.0 (3.0–5.0)3.0 (2.0–5.0)<0.001
    N5.0 (3.0–7.0)4.0 (3.0–6.0)3.0 (2.0–5.0)<0.001
DAS28 (0–10)
    DK5.8 (4.7–6.6)5.5 (4.7–6.2)5.2 (4.3–6.0)<0.001
    N6.0 (5.4–6.8)6.0 (5.0–6.8)5.6 (5.0–6.3)0.007
TJC (0–28)
    DK12.0 (6.0–19.0)10.0 (4.0–16.0)9.0 (4.0–15.0)0.001
    N11.0 (6.0–19.0)10.0 (5.0–15.0)7.0 (4.0–14.0)0.004
SJC (0–28)
    DK10.0 (6.0–16.0)9.0 (5.0–14.0)8.0 (4.0–12.0)<0.001
    N10.0 (7.0–15.0)10.0 (5.0–13.0)8.0 (4.0–13.0)0.01
Patient’s pain score (0–100)
    DK65.0 (42.0–78.0)64.5 (50.0–77.5)61.0 (38.0–75.0)0.11
    N60.5 (46.3–77.8)65.0 (43.0–74.5)51.0 (34.0–71.0)0.02
Patient’s global health score (0–100)
    DK64.0 (44.0–81.0)66.0 (51.0–81.5)64.5 (43.0–79.0)0.28
    N67.0 (51.3–81.0)68.0 (42.5–82.0)60.0 (41.0–76.8)0.04
Doctor’s overall assessment (0–100)
    DK59.5 (34.0–75.0)61.5 (37.0–75.0)50.0 (30.0–68.0)<0.001
    N62.5 (50.0–71.8)55.0 (38.0–67.0)48.0 (34.0–60.0)<0.001
mHAQ (1–4)
    DK1.9 (1.5–2.4)2.0 (1.5–2.3)1.9 (1.5–2.2)0.27
    N2.0 (1.6–2.5)2.0 (1.6–2.4)1.9 (1.5–2.1)0.03
Serum CRP (mg/l)
    DK26.2 (10.0–56.5)26.4 (12.0–57.7)17.5 (8.0–46.0)0.006
    N27.0 (12.0–43.0)27.5 (9.3–59.5)22.0 (10.0–49.0)0.52
Steroid dosage (mg)
    DK7.5 (0.0–10.0)5.0 (0.0–10.0)2.5 (0.0–7.5)<0.001
    N5 (0.0–10.0)2.5 (0.0–8.8)2.5 (0.0–7.5)0.005